I ordered this book hoping to begin learning the fascinating subject of medical astrology. This would require a clear explanation correlating different astrological events to their associated medical conditions, hopefully in a systematic and complete way. I was disappointed, and I will be returning the book to Amazon.
What I found here was the "case study" copout. In hindsight we know, for example, that Arnold Schwarzenegger is very strong and has heart trouble. I really am not impressed by a recital of far too many astrological details about his chart coming to the conclusion, somehow, that he is very strong and has heart trouble.
I appreciate directness, simplicity, clarity, and organization. None of that can be found in this book.
After nearly 30 years studying astrology and tarot, and teaching them as a single unified subject on simegen.com, in seminars, and in my book series The Biblical Tarot, I now see Noel Tyl's entire approach to astrology as fundamentally different from anyone else's (except his own students perhaps).
Some people thrive on this angle of approach, others are mystified and think his writing style is at fault, and others reject it in their bones and believe his astrology faulty.
As a professional writer of fiction and nonfiction, and teacher of writing (also on simegen.com ) I judge Tyl's writing style as exactly appropriate to project the underlying philosophy of his approach to astrology.
Tyl's is a psychological approach and his style is an exceptionally lucid version of the style you will find in most psychology textbooks. By reading a few paragraphs of his work, you can probably decide if his approach is for you.
As a mystic who is also a science fiction writer trained in Chemistry, I find that Tyl modernizes astrology by correlating and re-interpreting the Ancient Wisdom in terms of what modern science has discovered about the human psyche, personality development process, and the scars left by even the most benign upbringing. In the Tyl approach, nature, nurture and karma come together into a picture of the whole person, and the wholeness of Life as an ongoing developmental process.
ASTROLOGICAL TIMING OF CRITICAL ILLNESS is not a book that can be easily read and understood outside the context of Tyl's basic approach. This one is an advanced book for the student of Tyl's version of astrology. It would seem opaque even to an accomplished practicing professional astrologer if that astrologer were steeped in a different set of assumptions about Life and where astrology can fit into Life.
If your skills aren't up to comprehending an advanced astrology textbook on an extremely specialized branch of astrology, buy this book and put it away on your top shelf. You'll get to it eventually, and it could save someone's life. So many of Tyl's books are out of print, I wouldn't let the chance to stock this one go by.
In the meantime, read it quickly for the definition of the quindecile aspect and the way Pluto tends to show up as a harbinger of a health-challenge. Then notice those elements in the charts you analyze, take notes, track your clients, and see if these clues help you help them. If so, sit down one weekend and really read this book cover to cover.
To get the most out of this book you'll probably need to follow the footnotes that refer to many of Tyl's other works -- on midpoints, developmental deficit and the moon's nodes, and especially on the Pluto involvement in extreme Prominence and fame (which is treated in Synthesis & Counseling in Astrology : The Professional Manual by Noel Tyl ).
Most of Tyl's life work in astrology consists of contributions which are just the start of a line of research that will have to be carried out by teams with serious funding at their disposal. Some enterprising medical student may one day use this book to design a project and apply for a research grant.
Even if you don't like or subscribe to Tyl's approach, you should come to understand his theories so you'll understand that research when it's published. And it will be.